According to the Food Standards Association(FSA) in 2014, there was over half a million cases of food poisoning from known pathogens. This number doubles if unknown pathogens are included. The implications of this research are you have a one in six chance of contracting food poisoning.

Food poisoning is caused by eating food contaminated by bad bacteria, like salmonella, E.Coli and viruses like the Norovirus, to name just a few. While there is also good bacteria in food, these bacteria are responsible for creating the havoc of food poisoning.

Most cases of food poisoning is treated at home and will pass within a couple of days. Only the most severe cases makes it to the GP so it is important to know what the symptoms are of food poisoning and how to treat it and when to seek medical help.

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The symptoms of food poisoning:

1) feeling sick (nausea)
2) vomiting
3) diarrhea, which may contain blood or mucus (food to eat)
4) stomach cramps and abdominal (tummy) pain
5) a lack of energy and weakness
6) loss of appetite
7) a high temperature (fever)
8) aching muscles
9) chills

Once you have contracted food poisoning what should you do?

1) The most important treatment is to stay well hydrated, drink plenty of water.
2) Rest

food poisoning symptoms
3) Eat as you can, stay away from rich food.
4) Avoid alcohol, caffeine and fatty food.

See your GP if the symptoms does not get better within a couple of days, especially if you experience any of the following symptoms:

Decreased or no urination, dry mouth, increased thirst, dizziness and weakness, blood in the stools, fever, vomiting or diarrhea longer than 72 hours, neurological symptoms such as blurry vision, muscle weakness and tingling in the arms.

The GP will do further tests to determine which pathogen is responsible for the discomfort and treat with the appropriate medication.

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